Program Team

The Program team is composed of experienced multidisciplinary transplant professionals who are accomplished in clinical research, outcome studies and transplant management. They are responsible for operating and evaluating the program.
Director
Akinlolu O. Ojo, MD, PhD
Executive Dean
University of Kansas School of Medicine
Kansas City, KS
Deputy Director
Robert M. Merion, MD
President
Arbor Research Collaborative For Health
Ann Arbor, MI
Research Scientist
Barry A. Hong, PhD, FAACP
Professor of Psychiatry
Department of Psychiatry
Washington University School of Medicine
St. Louis, MO
Program Evaluation Specialist
Amit Mathur, MD, MS
Assistant Professor of Surgery
Division of Transplant Surgery at Mayo Clinic
Phoenix, AZ
Manager
Kimberly A. Gifford, MBA
Program Manager
American Society of Transplant Surgeons
Arlington, VA
Coordinator
Sidni Brown, MSW, LCSW
Senior Program Coordinator
American Society of Transplant Surgeons
Arlington, VA
Coordinator
Holly Warren, RN
Program Coordinator
American Society of Transplant Surgeons
Arlington, VA
Assistant Coordinator
Marie-Claire Walters
Assistant Program Coordinator
American Society of Transplant Surgeons
Arlington, VA
Assistant
Sofie Epshtein
Program Assistant
American Society of Transplant Surgeons
Arlington, VA

Advisory Group

The Advisory Group was established to assist the National Living Donor Assistance Center in:

  • Development and management of the program
  • Development of program policies and eligibility criteria
  • Monitoring outcomes and performance
  • Contributing relevant expertise to the program

The Advisory Group meets annually, holds periodic conference calls, and is comprised of a kidney donor, liver donor, transplant surgeons, transplant physicians, transplant nurse coordinator, transplant social worker, health economist, social scientist, financial administrator and a HRSA representative. Below is a list of current Advisory Group members.

Name, Title, & Affiliations
Expertise & Affiliated Volunteer Organizations
Betsy Walsh, JD, MPH, Chair (2020)
United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS)
Novant Health, Vice President and Deputy General Counsel
Charlotte, NC
Past-president, UNOS
Living Kidney Donor
Alex Berrios, BS (2022)
National Kidney Foundation
Patient Services Advocate
University of Kentucky
Lexington, KY
Kidney transplant recipient
AAKP Kentucky Ambassador
NKF Advocacy Member
NKF Peer Mentor
Lisa Donovan, BPS (2022)
Transplant Financial Coordinators Association
Transplant Financial Coordinator
SUNY Upstate University Hospital
Syracuse, NY
Transplant Financial Coordinator
Trustee, Transplant Financial Coordinators Association
Tarunjeet Klair, MD (2022)
American Society of Transplant Surgeons
Surgical Director, Living Liver Transplantation
UT Health San Antonio
San Antonio, TX
Transplant Surgeon
Krista Lentine, MD, MS, PhD (2022)
American Society of Nephrology
Jane A. Beckman Endowed Chair in Transplantation
Medical Director, Living Kidney Donation
St. Louis University School of Medicine
St. Louis, MO
Transplant Nephrologist
NKF Dr. Shaul Massry Distinguished Lecturer
OPTN/UNOS Living Donor Committee
Didier Mandelbrot, MD (2021)
American Society of Transplantation (AST)
University of Wisconsin
Madison, WI
Transplant Nephrologist
Marie Morgievich, BS, BSN, MSN, CCTC (2023)
NATCO - The Organization for Transplant Professionals
Director, Clinical Services and Living Donor Institute, Saint Barnabas Medical Center
Livingston, NJ
Transplant Coordination
Co-work group leader Living Donor Consensus Conference
Past Chair, National Kidney Registry
Kay Payne, PhD (2020)
Minority Organ Tissue Transplantation Education Program (MOTTEP)
Professor Howard University
Washington, DC
Living kidney donor
Author, religious studies, communication science, and psychology
Al Roth, PhD (2020)
Professor of Economics
Stanford University, CA
Palo Alto, CA
Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences
Guggenheim Fellowship for Social Sciences
Author
Founder New England Program for Kidney Exchange
Cassidy Shaver, MSW, LCSW (2022)
Society of Transplant Social Workers
Kidney Transplant Social Worker & Financial Coordinator
Lankenau Medical Center
Wynnewood, PA
Transplant Social Worker
National Association of Social Workers
Council of Nephrology Social Workers
Pennsylvania Society of Clinical Social Workers
Society of Transplant Social Workers
Philadelphia Regional Transplant Social Work Group
Betsy Stein, MBA (2021)
UNOS Transplant Administrators committee
Corporate Director, Simmons Transplant Institute
Baylor University Medical Center
Dallas, TX
Former Director of Clinic Research, Baylor Research Institute
Leadership in transplant administration, operations and strategic planning
Shannon Wright, BSW (2021)
Forum of ESRD Networks
Executive Director, IPRO ESRD Network of the South Atlantic (Network 6)
Morrisville, NC
Former Director of ESRD Network Coordinating Center
Leadership in healthcare quality improvement for CMS and the ESRD community
Mesmin Germain, MPH, MBA (ex officio)
NLDAC Project Officer
Department of Transplantation (DoT)/Health Resources Services Admin (HRSA)
Rockville, MD
Grant Management
Frank Holloman, MPA (ex officio)
DoT Deputy Director
Department of Transplantation (DoT)/Health Resources Services Admin (HRSA)
Rockville, MD
Grant Management

Review Committee

The Application Review Committee (ARC) members are responsible for reviewing applications received by NLDAC each week. All confidential patient information is blocked to the reviewer.

ARC members approve or deny applications on the basis of whether or not the applicants meet NLDAC program criteria and eligibility. If a waiver for financial hardship is requested, ARC members make a recommendation to the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to approve or deny the application. HRSA makes the final decision on the request for a waiver and their determination is not subject to appeal.

Name, Title, & Affiliations
Expertise & Affiliated Volunteer Organizations
Julie LaMantia, LCSW
Banner Good Samaritan Transplant Center
Phoenix, AZ
Transplant Social Worker
Society for Transplant Social Workers
Debra Washington, BS
Health Administration, Retired Army
Silver Spring, MD
Transplant Recipient
National Kidney Foundation
Roxanne Taylor, RN, MSN, CCTC, CPTC
Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center
Lebanon, NH
Transplant Administrator
NATCO, The Organization for Transplant Professionals
Holly Warren, RN
American Society of Transplant Surgeons
Arlington, VA
NLDAC Program Coordinator
Marie-Claire Walters
American Society of Transplant Surgeons
Arlington, VA
NLDAC Senior Program Assistant

Learn what you need to know before applying for NLDAC assistance by reading our Program Snapshot.


Organ Donor
University of Kansas
ASTS
Arbor Research Collaborative for Health